Yesterday, the California Secretary of State announced that the trial lawyer sponsored attack on MICRA has officially qualified for the November 4, 2014 ballot. The measure is being called the "Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act" and will be assigned a proposition number in early July.  

The main goal of the trial lawyers’ initiative is to quadruple MICRA’s essential cap on noneconomic damages and thereby increase their fees by as much as three times what is currently permitted under MICRA. If enacted, it has been estimated that lifting MICRA’s cap would increase health care costs by almost $10 billion per year in California, or approximately $1,000 per family of four. The trial lawyers have admittedly cloaked the initiative as a thinly veiled “patient safety” initiative, mandating random and incident-driven drug testing of physicians.  The other “patient safety” provision is a mandate that physicians, pharmacists and other providers check a flawed government-run computer system (known as CURES) containing patients’ history of prescribed drugs, putting that sensitive information at risk.

The trial lawyers’ lead spokesman acknowledged the deceit of these provisions, referring to them as the “ultimate sweetener”.

A broad coalition of over 1,000 groups – including physicians, community clinics, hospitals, nurses, organized labor, the Chamber of Commerce, Planned Parenthood, ACLU, and many others – have come together to fight this misguided, deceptive initiative that will increase health costs, reduce health access, and place sensitive patient medical information at risk. The campaign is well positioned to defeat the initiative, but victory is by no means certain. Physicians will play a very important role in this campaign. Here are some of the ways you can help out immediately:

  • Sign the Pledge Card: Commit to voting against the initiative completing the MICRA pledge card online - click here to sign the pledge!
  • Make a Financial Contribution: Defending MICRA will cost a lot of money and contributions of all sizes will help - click here to contribute!
  • Get Your Colleagues Engaged: If you know colleagues who are not ACCMA/CMA members, tell them to join. We are leading this fight and need the support of all physicians.  

Please contact the ACCMA at 510-654-5383 with any questions or concerns.